13 Replies Latest reply: Jan 17, 2006 2:28 PM by Hawaiian_Starman
Lizz Level 1 (10 points)
Me again. On Outlook, I could do something called "in-line editing" in the list mode. This feature allowed me to change the subject of emails that I received to something that made sense to me before I filed them in a folder. Make sense? If someone sent me an email and they called it "Hello" and I wanted to keep it and rename it, "Info on Cats," so I would know what was in the email.
I don't want to create a smart folder for individual emails, but I would dearly love to revise the subject to be meaningful to ME.
BTW: Does everyone use Mail or are there more flexible programs that you like?

iBook G4, Mac OS X (10.4.3)
  • Allan Sampson Level 10 (123,405 points)
    Not possible with Mail.

    I've been using the Mail.app exlusively since Jaguar was introduced (switching from Entourage) thru Panther and now Tiger and for my needs and preferences, I wouldn't use anything else due to the integration with Address Book and other Apple applications. I upgraded from Office X to Office 2004 and when launching Entourage 2004 to have a look, it seems and feels extremely bloated compared to the Mail.app because it is like most other Microsoft applications.

    The Mail.app is more comparable to Outlook Express. Entourage is more comparable to Outlook.
  • rtdunham Level 2 (325 points)
    the inability to change subject lines is the biggest shortcoming of Mail.

    I don't understand why that flexibility can't be added. there's a long list of users expressing this same complaint. they've built a mail filing system comparable to building physical filing cabinets where you can change the names on the drawers but not on the filefolders within them. I've yet to see either an explanation of why the feature shouldn't be allowed, or why it can't be implemented from a programming point of view.
  • Sijmons Level 4 (2,090 points)
    this is more a legal issue, if you are allowed to change incoming mail afterwards you can no longer use such mails for any legal purpose. This may not be a big thing for you but for many it is.
  • Lizz Level 1 (10 points)
    Hmmm. Very interesting. However, Microsoft---as sensitive as they are to litigation---make the function available. It's not really different from changing the subject of forwarded messages. Most of the time, the revised email would simply be filed, in a folder, but with a new subject that facilitates retrieval. However, if it were mailed to someone else, there would be a trail. The sender of the original email will, of course, have their copy in case of some investigation. I know how sensitive this is, having recently listened to a Congressional investigation where people's emails were read, often out of context, to make a case. Not the kind of thing anyone wants to have happen to their email. I thank you for taking the time to make this comment and I do appreciate the sentiment.
    Happy Holiday Season
  • Mick Burrell Level 3 (935 points)
    You could forward it to yourself but redirect is probably better as you don't then get the forward information added to the beginning of the e-mail.
  • Lizz Level 1 (10 points)
    I'll call that a wrap.
    I had not seen redirect.
    That's as close as I'll get, I'm sure.
    Technically, is that the only difference between "forward" and "redirect?"
  • Mick Burrell Level 3 (935 points)
    I think so but if there are other differences, they're probably small and I'm sure someone will point them out.
  • Lizz Level 1 (10 points)
    Thank you again.
    This helps me a lot.
    I get a lot of emails because I'm researching a book, and it's helpful for me to be able to change the subject to easily locate emails with important information.
  • mlguerrero Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi folks,

    I have experienced frustration with this as well. Last year I wrote an Applescript. It works fine if you're running 10.3. For some reason I haven't been able to run it in Tiger. If anyone knows Applescript and can help I'd appreciate it. Here it is if you're interested:

    -- This little script basically allows you to change the subject heading any e-mail.

    tell application "Mail"
    set theSubjectList to {}
    set themessages to selection as list
    repeat with msg in themessages
    set thisSubject to (subject of msg as string)
    -- I haven't been able to find a more efficient and direct way to select the message than the above four lines. I copied and pasted from another script. For some reason I can't do it without the "repeat" command.
    set ChangeSubject to display dialog "What do you want to rename this e-mail?" default answer "" buttons {"OK", "Cancel"} default button "OK"
    if the button returned of ChangeSubject is "OK" then set NewSubject to text returned of ChangeSubject
    display dialog "The subject is now known as " & NewSubject
    set subject of msg to (NewSubject)
    end repeat
    end tell

    PowerBook G$   Mac OS X (10.4.4)  
  • Lizz Level 1 (10 points)
    Thank you for taking the time to share the AppleScript. I am going to take this to the Genius Bar at the Apple Store and see if they can help me.

    iBook G4   Mac OS X (10.4.4)   NEW TO APPLE: Happy But Clueless
  • Hawaiian_Starman Level 7 (21,405 points)
    I am going to take this to the Genius
    Bar at the Apple Store and see if they can help

    Please post back and let us know how what the "genius bar" had to say.
  • Lizz Level 1 (10 points)
    I posed this question to the "genius," and was told that unless I was very experienced I should not try to create an Apple Script. I was warned that the "guys on the forum," are very experienced. The question of why is would not work on Tiger was not addressed.
  • Hawaiian_Starman Level 7 (21,405 points)
    " I was warned that the "guys on the forum," are very experienced. The question of why is would not work on Tiger was not addressed.

    Hmmm. Warnings from Apple personnel ought to be taken very, very seriously, especially if there is an opportunity to learn something new from one of us very, very experienced "guys".

    Not surprised that the "why" was not addressed. Whatever....

    I'm going to do some exploring of my own in some other forums. I'll post back if I discover anything new. Also, I'll send a request into Apple. You never know, it might be read by a very experienced "guy".